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My 2023 Recap: Life Lately And The Year In A Nutshell

Image source: Clealth

Hey, beauty!

It’s that time when reels and posts on our year’s highlights hit the streets of Instagram. I have enjoyed seeing people’s 2023 recap because it is an avenue to zoom in on the good things which our brains quickly forget.

I also believe is a good way to see how much you’ve grown. It is now a tradition on the blog, and even though I have not published a new post in 2 months, I couldn’t miss this one!

I’m sharing my recap in quarters instead of months like last year’s post this year.

Are you ready?

Let’s go!

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2023 Recap- Q1 (JANUARY-MARCH)

My highlight in the first quarter of 2023 was having the full house. My siblings and I are at different phases and locations due to school. Having everyone at home was the definition of chaos and fun.  It’s so beautiful how much we have grown.

By mid-January, I rounded off my outside posting(i.e. going to another hospital to observe and participate in their unit activities). My group members were fun, and we had our backs all through.

In February, I had a photoshoot with my friends. The plan was to post our pictures once our results came out and be a reminder to give all we had during the preparation process. I remember looking at those pictures whenever I was tired of reading and getting motivated.

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We passed with flying colours, and my friends had a whole spot in my journey to an MBBS.

Another highlight this month was Valentine’s Day, duh!

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In between all of these, we had to leave school for the presidential elections. If you’re not Nigerian, that would take another blog post to explain, but the point is that it created another shift in our exam schedule and was pretty messed up. 

By the end of Q1, my final year exams were drawing close. Final year comes with a weight on your shoulders. It’s the “end” but also the beginning. When I tell you, I was reading more than I had ever done. The pressure was insane!

The stress of reading with no power supply, looking for where to charge my devices, study groups, reading and more reading. While that was happening, it was my blog’s second anniversary. I couldn’t celebrate it at the moment, but it was a win that made me look forward to being done with my exams

2023 Recap- Q2 (APRIL- JUNE)

This quarter started with eye bags, yet the skin was popping. One thing I did not miss during my finals was my skincare routine. I simplified it to my cleanser and sunscreen during the day and then cleanser and moisturiser at night. It was one of my destressing moments; thankfully, the skin cooperated.

Usually, by 10 pm, I would close my books and pray. During those days, I realised the truth in what my seniors said- residual knowledge is what sees you through during exams like this and not last-minute reading.

By the 26th of April, my study group did our graduation outing. It was a massive leap of faith because we believed we would post the pictures we took in February without resits. We visited a nice Indian restaurant in Lagos, and now my friends love Indian food!

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Two days later, our final results were out! Shout out to @scenesbytosoke for capturing these moments.

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Image source: Scenes by Tosoke

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Image source: Scenes by Tosoke

May came with opportunities I never thought of. I had my first gig as a skincare consultant with Joy’s new bar soap launch. This increased my resolve to share all about skincare because people’s perceptions of their skin were worrisome. The first week was in Ibadan, which opened my eyes to that city! It is so serene, and I look forward to visiting there by train in 2024.

I fell sick when I returned. That was an accumulation of all the stress, but the joy of that period was amazing.

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I resumed creating content again. I even installed my first set of false eyelashes and learned 5 easy ways to care for them. Did I mention it was in this quarter my creating limits were tested?

By May, I started a content challenge where I consecutively posted on Instagram for 60 days. It built my community and gave me cheerleaders!

I became the team lead for interviews for the 2nd edition of MWAN magazine. Kemi put me up to it and believed in me before I caught up.

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Image source: Clealth

June saw me getting my brows microbladed. I shared the caterpillar-to-butterfly process of micro-blading on my Instagram. There were many events: birthdays, a friend’s wedding, and my parent’s wedding anniversary. It was also the last time I saw my dear friend before he japa’d.

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PS: Japa means to “run away” and in our context as Nigerians, it means migration to another country.

2023 Recap- Q3 (JULY-SEPTEMBER)

The third quarter in this 2023 recap starts with July’s best month of the year! Yes, I’m biased because it’s my birth month. 

It was time for university clearance, where you moved from one department to another to sign off with proof that you were a student. We need to get over these manual processes, but I digress.

I wrote 30 things I would like to do before my 30th birthday as I celebrated my 26th birthday. I didn’t experience birthday blues this year, which I’m thankful for.

It was in this quarter that I got a brutal confirmation of my diagnosis. While that was depressing, knowing there was finally a way forward was an answered prayer.

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While battling that grief, I got the first paid skincare-sponsored post on the blog. It was a dream come true!

I got back into fiction reading with Today I Become a Woman by Aiwanose Odafen, started my IG live series and tried my first ever plastic-free retinol serum by Common Heir. It’s wild how I went from being scared of retinol to trying 3 this quarter. I will post on that so you know your options if you’re ready to incorporate retinol as a beginner.

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I even put beads on my hair for the first time in over 10 years. Looking forward to trying new things on my hair. Then, at the point we had given up, my school finally released the date of our induction into the medical profession. It was time for the glam, the celebrations, and the joy! Q3 ended with a sleepover with my friends and visiting my longtime friend’s home for the first time.

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Image source: Papii Anthov

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I had another IG live session and created more content. Then, I finally celebrated my blog anniversary with 2 brands. Delay is not denial, okay? That’s my justification for celebrating my brand after 5 months, lol! It was a full circle moment going from the first giveaway social media post in 2022 to having 2 sponsors in 2023.

There were birthdays to celebrate, outings with my sister, my first medical outreach as a licenced doctor, and lots of family wins.

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In between this, I was lobbying for my house job, one of the most stressful adult realisations. I also migrated from MailChimp to Substack for my newsletters. You can sign up here.

2023 Recap- Q4 (OCTOBER- DECEMBER)

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October started slowly with a breast cancer event and more content creation. Then, when I least expected it, I got a job as a medical house officer.

I started with paediatrics (taking care of children). My hospital’s paediatrics is not divided into units like the other specialities. As a house officer, you take blood samples, get the history from patients/relatives, and implement patient management.

As much as I enjoyed starting my house job, it took me a while to be emotionally stable. My friend kept reminding me I was living in answered prayers whenever I ranted to her.

I started my elevator pictures, tried to dress cutely, learned how to set intravenous line access for babies and took blood samples. That takes a lot of patience, to be honest. I met nice colleagues and formed a bond off our work trauma. Some of my classmates resumed work some days later, and the environment again became familiar.

After a stressful first set of 4 weeks moving back and forth from home to work, I finally got a space close to the hospital. Also, who invented 24-hour calls? Why do I have to work for 24 hours and still do my normal 8 working hours?

By the time I was settled with work, I found it challenging to create content. I would come online, view reels and posts and wonder why I couldn’t do what I used to do consistently earlier in the year.

In November, my partner started his house job, and that was another answered prayer! It felt good moving from students to graduates to colleagues! In the same month, my department celebrated World Prematurity Day and more birthdays.

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movie-outing-with-colleagues

Did I mention that you must be extra careful with children and your health? It was after my really bad flu that I started wearing face masks. I also took sick leave the second time I got ill because it was so bad.  Thankfully, my call after my sick leave was the best, and I got to go home for the weekend to recuperate. 

December was also my friend’s bridal shower, which was so beautiful! Then, I also attended the resident doctor’s dinner with my bae. My makeup skills are still in perfect shape after over 3 months of doing so, and that feels good!

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Also, I finally did a dental procedure I’ve been looking forward to. All I can say is I wish I had started this earlier! The dentist teased me so much, and I resolved to get my teeth checked every 6 months to a year as a good patient.

Then came Christmas! My prayer was to enjoy Christmas the way I wanted to. That meant sleeping, eating,  seeing movies and catching up with family. We also had a Secret Santa gift exchange among the house officers, which was so cute!

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It was also in this month that I got scammed. One day, I will share that story. I was devastated. People are mean; sometimes, being kind can make you look foolish.  It’s funny how I kept showing up as if nothing happened . God came through and made that loss pale compared to his provision. I still shudder at the thought of that incident. 

This period also showed me how much God’s peace reigns in my heart. My 2023 recap is a glimpse of the emotions, wins, losses, answered prayers, lots of waiting, falling, rising again, lost friendships, renewed ones, and so much more!

This year started with hope and a fear of the unknown.  I learned the meaning of one step at a time while trusting God. Thank you for being a significant highlight of my year.

Please share one highlight from your 2023 in the comments.

Say hi if you see yourself in any picture, too!

If anyone asks if you’re ready for 2024, reply them with

“Is 2024 ready for me?”

Happy New Year, my friend!

Please don’t forget to subscribe to the blog, tap the love button, and share this post with a friend!

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Comments (4)

  • Debby 2 months ago Reply

    Wow, you had such a rollercoaster of a year, I’m glad you were able to articulate it. This blog post gave me so much hope especially concerning my forthcoming exams and a strong reminder to take everything to God in prayer regardless of how little, big or how far away you’ve been..I’m grateful for all God has been doing in your life, the growth, lessons and wins.

    And yes, whose idea was 24 HOURS CALL😪, I pray God sees you through and I look forward to a beautiful 2024 for you and more growth for A DASH OF IRUOMA.

    All my love 😘

    Iruoma Osonwa 2 weeks ago Reply

    Debo! Thank you so much for this heart-felt comment!
    Amen ooo!
    All my love baby girl

  • Ifeoluwa 2 months ago Reply

    I finally got the time to read this blog post and I think it’s a good way to start my day considering the fact that I’m currently feeling blue. I have tried unsuccessfully to remember details that happened in 2023. Do you keep a journal or something because how did you remember? It’s so detailed. It also made me a tad emotional. All I see is a very strong and determined woman and I’m really rooting for you. Looking forward to you getting on your grind and sharing beautiful content as always ❤️

    Iruoma Osonwa 2 weeks ago Reply

    Awww Tia!
    I don’t keep a steady journal but I use my pictures to remind myself, more like a digital diary.
    Thank you very much hun!

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